“But tonight, she embraced the truth. She loved. Had always loved, would always love.”
Nora Roberts makes great trilogies – they usually follow a very similar method (I have read a lot of her trilogies) but there’s always just enough difference that the new set of characters is a warm breath of fresh air and a delight to read. This trilogy is no different, and the characters of these books stole my heart. Particularly, the final couple in this trilogy – the ones that have had itthe hardest through the rest of the books, they shine in this – in a way that only two people who have been through hell can then shine.
Review after the jump!
County Mayo is rich in the traditions of Ireland, legends that Branna O’Dwyer fully embraces in her life and in her work as the proprietor of The Dark Witch shop, which carries soaps, lotions, and candles for tourists, made with Branna’s special touch.
Branna’s strength and selflessness hold together a close circle of friends and family—along with their horses and hawks and her beloved hound. But there’s a single missing link in the chain of her life: love…
She had it once—for a moment—with Finbar Burke, but a shared future is forbidden by history and blood. Which is why Fin has spent his life traveling the world to fill the abyss left in him by Branna, focusing on work rather than passion.
Branna and Fin’s relationship offers them both comfort and torment. And though they succumb to the heat between them, there can be no promises for tomorrow. A storm of shadows threatens everything that their circle holds dear. It will be Fin’s power, loyalty, and heart that will make all the difference in an age-old battle between the bonds that hold their friends together and the evil that has haunted their families for centuries.
Okay, before I start – a truth bomb: I totally read this all in one night. I started at 11 pm and finished at 4:43 am, tears streaming down my face and sniffling. I crawled into bed and the Boy rolled over and asked me what time it was, and then fell back to sleep, leaving me with my angst and trouble sleeping. Sigh. I am such a bibliophile.
Okay, onto the review!
When we last left our heroes, there were two couples – already gone through some hell themselves, both because of miscommunications and danger and gender roles that needed to be addressed – but also because an ancient evil was out to get them. In this edition of the trilogy, we have an explanation for the ancient evil, which is interesting – both because I never thought I needed one (asides from the fact that he’s a sorcerer) and because it works out well, upping the stakes just enough to make the whole thing go crazy.
As to our couple of the hour – oh my god, so worth the wait.
Branna is the epitome of the earth mother – she takes care of everyone, has little time for herself and puts all responsibility square on her own shoulders. Added to that, she’s introverted, dedicated and very accomplished for a person so young. She knows her own mind, and acts accordingly – which is why her romance with Fin is so good, because in that she won’t accept her own mind (or heart) and refuses to acquiesce to it.
Meanwhile, Fin is a person who hates parts of himself and who has run to the far ends of the world to forget himself – and Branna – in the process.
I really liked this couple – I thought they were real in a way that surpassed the previous two couples, but their story also tied the other two together, making the whole trilogy more real for me. The family and friend interactions brought me to tears and the steam scenes were ravish-worthy.
Suffice it to say that I highly recommend this book – it is an insta-Nora-Roberts-classic and one I plan on rereading again soon!
Any trilogies you would recommend?